DECEMBER 27, 2003:
" Now, before we learn how to build the latest in extreme graphic chipset processors, let's recite the code of the elves, shall we? "
-- Elf Teacher, Elf (2003)
Hope everybody had a happy holiday. We're still hard at work, like little elves in a cookie tree. Speaking of cookies, here are some photos of this year's festive gingerbread monstrosity -- Gob Attacks Diner!
Lately Lars will just start rambling on what he's doing with the game AI (artificial intelligence). It sounds a bit like this:
"And then the military units can...BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH".Yeah, he actually says the "BLAH" part. Why? Because I'm fixing him with the same glazed-over stare that he gives me when I start talking about something that happened to the mizzen topgallant staysail in a Patrick O'Brian novel. Oh well. You can hear more about the AI (BLAH BLAH) over at his new Tech F/X. And I'll belay talking about the staysail and show you the TCFH Options screen featuring director/producer Harold Haxton's office: (click for bigger)
"...they've moved my desk four times already this year,
and I used to be over by the window, and I could see the squirrels, and they were merry."
You'll access saved games from the film cans, scenarios from the scripts, monsters from the headshots, city/era from the wall map, game options from the desk drawer, credits from the ham sandwich, and the stop-motion armature on the left leads to the monster customization screen. The door cleverly leads to the exit. Oh, and inspired by Dave Long's article over at GamerDad, the office clock will reflect your computer's system time. Heck, maybe I should throw a lever puzzle in there somewhere and give Myst a run for the money.
Stay tuned for new screenshots showing all the different kinds of tiny people you can squish in TCFH. We've now got escaped prisoners, SWAT teams, utility workers, businessmen and even naked people (don't worry - they're only ten pixels tall).
OCTOBER 30, 2003:
This Halloween's special super not-so-secret monster is an homage to Ray Harryhausen, the stop-motion wizard who brought some of the greatest giant movie monsters to life. Harry, the 70-foot tall skeleton warrior, is based on the animated skeletons that took on Sinbad in the Seventh Voyage of Sinbad (they were also in Jason And The Argonauts). Here's Harry (Note: image links to a 300k animated gif of Harry getting killed in-game. It's sped up a bit, though):
Harry goes to pieces
There are a few new Washington, D.C. screenshots over in Screenshots.
And in other news, we recently noted some spooky similarities between TCFH and DOOM III:
SEPTEMBER 16, 2003:
Lars is fixing bugs and working on the prefetcher. And a fetching prefetcher it is, I assume. If you're intrigued by that, you're in luck -- he's written a brand spankin' dull Tech F/X all about it. Meanwhile, I am sitting around in a bathrobe and fuzzy bunny slippers, eating bon-bons as usual. No, really, I am sitting around in a bathrobe and fuzzy bunny slippers making hundreds and hundred of tiny buildings for your destruction pleasure. But I'll be updating with some Washington D.C. screenshots soon.
AUGUST 8, 2003:
One of my favorite B-movies is Attack Of The Killer Tomatoes (1978). Well, our latest addition will make those tomatoes green with envy. Yes, from the archives of Harold Haxton's best friend and cinematographer Arlen Ford comes the long-lost script for Peril Begins With A Pea (1964?):
"World-famous botanist John C. Baines and his son, Jack discover a never-before-seen species of prehistoric legume beneath the frozen Antarctic tundra. While on display in the Museum of Natural History, the famous pea is stolen by Kat Doigts-Léger, a glamorous - and, naturally, dangerous - French jewel thief. Once removed from its carefully controlled environment, the pea inexplicably begins to grow. Kat kidnaps Jack Baines in an attempt to find out more about the vegetable, but the pea splits and goes on a rampage, growing to almost 60 feet tall. Now Jack and Kat must work together to stop a deadly green giant from destroying our nation's capital...and perhaps, the world."
A Birdseye View
"You can touch that ol' llama until hell freezes over."
-- Tom Servo (The Amazing Transparent Man)
Yes, we're still working: city maps, ground damage (craters, monster footprints), making trees sway in the wind and fall down, making llamas breathe fire...
Put on your pajamas, grab your pillow and your Teddy Ruxpin, because our latest Tech F/X is well, not too exciting. It's about some bitmap memory tool thing or other. Seriously, don't look at it unless you're a programmer or having trouble sleeping. More exciting things soon to come after the holiday...including a new monster from one of Harold Haxton's never-produced movies.
MAY 21, 2003:
I've moved the Gameplay Trailer stuff to its own page.
MAY 10, 2003:
We've been putting together a gameplay trailer to take to E3 this week and foist upon unwary strangers. You'll be able to see it here when we get back, but just for now here's a shot of The Tin Behemoth getting down with his proverbial bad self on the PC dance pad (click for bigger):
I moved the wallpapers to their own page.
APRIL 22, 2003:
I've just been pining for the fjords. Really, we've been busy. But I added a Tech F/X which details the minimap. There are a few new screenshots, too. And maybe you noticed a screenshot n' paragraph about us, top center, on the Pipeline page (p. 52) in the May issue of Computer Gaming World? Woo!
MARCH 20, 2003:
TCFH, now with 100% more llamas:
Look, Ma, llamas!
MARCH 8, 2003:
There's a new interview with us over at Gamespy. And make sure to check out this month's PC Gamer ("Preview Blowout" edition), we're on page 76.
MARCH 3, 2003:
Scientists have been added to the Enemies page.
Do you think we can get a grant for this?
I also put up a new Tech FX about Clara, the theremin we built. I'll be using her to make some special effects and music for TCFH. What's a theremin, you say? It's an electronic musical instrument...if you've ever seen a 1950s monster movie, you've heard a theremin.
FEBRUARY 8, 2003:
A ginormous new interview with us is now up, with a few new screenshots, at IGN's Action Vault. And we've got a new Technical F/X explaining all about how the interface works to monitor your monster's health.
"If it's not the tornados, it's the 100-foot tall fire newts...Earletta, we've got to move."
FEBRUARY 1, 2003:
Here's a first look at the redesigned interface (what was I thinking with that orange travesty???) AND the 52-Foot Woman. More screenshots of the 52-Foot Woman can be found in the new TCFH image gallery over at Gamerspulse.
JANUARY 18, 2003:
Did you notice, we finally made Computer Gaming World's Pipeline (page 64 of the January issue)? Yes, there we are, listed alphabetically somewhere between Star Wars Galaxies and Tron 2.
I put a few new screenshots up...
JANUARY 1, 2003:
Yes, it's that time again...Happy New Year! In other monstrous news, TCFH is previewed in this month's Computer Games magazine (page 34).
It's been nothing but massive destruction going on around here lately -- and I don't mean just what the cats are doing to the sofa. Lars has been perfecting the collapse scripts, so when things fall down go boom in the game, they do so in a much smoother and more realistic way. For more about that, see our latest Technical F/X column.
TERROR! DESTRUCTION! COOKIES! I recently baked up the confectionary catastrophe below, Monster Attacks Gingerbread City. Watch out, little gummy bears, your days are numbered (in the single digits, as a matter of fact...we've already eaten most of it). Yeah, that's some shoddy architecture, but I'm no Mothra Stewart.